Apple has released the highly anticipated second generation of Apple AirPods this morning. The new AirPods bring a number of improvements including improved battery life, support for “Hey, Siri”, wireless charging, and faster pairing with your iPhone, iPad, or Mac. The updated AirPods are available now in the Apple Store. They are $199 with the wireless charging case. If you want them without the wireless charging case, they are the same $159 as the current Apple AirPods. If you are already an AirPods, owner, you can pick up the wireless charging case for $79.
The second generation AirPods have the new H1 chip which brings significantly longer battery life to the earbuds as well as improved switching between devices. Apple states that switching between devices is now twice as fast as the first generation AirPods while battery life has improved some 50% over the first generation. “Hey, Siri” is now available as well, providing you hands-free access to Apple’s assistant without having to touch them or your iPhone.
Perhaps the biggest selling point however is the wireless Qi charging. This brings the earbuds in line with the iPhone and Apple Watch when it comes to wireless charging and was the last piece of the puzzle for the release of the Apple AirPower charging pad. That charging pad, two years in the making, looks to be set to be release immediately.
The release of the second generation AirPods comes in the middle of what has been a busy release week for the company. On Monday, they released the updated iPad Air and iPad mini 5 while on Tuesday they released an updated iMac lineup. All of this comes ahead of the main event on Monday, March 25th where Apple is expected to announce their new Apple TV Subscription service and Apple News Subscription service.